Missouri Opportunity: An Agenda for Black Missourians

Nicole On The Issues

Missouri Opportunity: an Agenda for Black Missourians

Faith teaches us that it is impossible to heal what is ignored. Missouri has witnessed powerful examples of healing through countless acts of unity, with citizens and law enforcement standing in solidarity, wanting change.

Our children deserve to live in a Missouri that is fair and accountable to all of its citizens.

The following framework begins an ongoing conversation that Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway will continue to have with activists, concerned citizens, legislators, members of clergy from all across Missouri.

Nicole Galloway believes that Missouri’s Black lives matter.

As a state we must not just say Black Lives Matter in the street but show it with the executive actions we take and the laws we pass.

Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II

“Auditor Galloway’s commitment to Black Missourians is reflected in a comprehensive agenda that aims to tackle racial disparities and discrimination that existed in our state for too long. Auditor Galloway is not afraid to declare that Black Lives Matter and has laid out a vision to ensure Missouri laws uphold this conviction. I look forward to working with her in the Governor’s office to build a safer, fairer, and more inclusive Missouri.”

— Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II

Criminal Justice Reform

 Elder Shawntelle Fisher, Founder/CEO The SoulFisher Ministries

“‘Those closest to the problem are the closest to the solution’” is a saying that has become more of a cliché than reality. That is why as a businesswoman who was formerly incarcerated, I believe we cannot have true justice or economic equality until we reform our criminal justice system. We need a leader who can bring accountability to a system that has persistently traumatized Black families across the state. We need a vision that focuses on long-term reformation rather than short-term intervention. Missouri needs a new way.”

— Elder Shawntelle Fisher, Founder/CEO The SoulFisher Ministries

“Building community trust in law enforcement and the justice system requires transparency and accountability. Civilian oversight of law enforcement, and transparency through the use of body cameras are steps we’ve known are needed since Ferguson. It’s time to get this done.”

— Auditor Nicole Galloway

Here’s how Nicole will take action:
  • Banning knee holds, chokeholds, and similar acts of applying force or pressure against the trachea, windpipe, carotid artery, or jugular vein.
  • Requiring that body camera devices be used by all law enforcement agencies in Missouri and mandating that those devices be activated from the beginning to the end of all interactions with suspects or witnesses.
  • Limiting the use of no-knock warrants in drug related cases. 
  • Give independent Oversight Boards subpoena power to investigate use-of-force and conduct violations, including deadly use of force incidents.
  • Institute a review of all The Peace Officer Standards and Training Program (POST) training materials, review all licenses of law enforcement basic training centers, basic training instructors, to ensure that all Missouri law enforcement training curricula pairs up with best practices in community policing and includes mandatory implicit bias and de-escalation training.
  • The Kansas City Police Department is one of the largest agencies in the U.S. that doesn’t have local control of its police department. Kansas City must have control over its own Police Department.
  • Creation of an independent statewide Civil Rights Accountability Board with subpoena power to investigate and refer for prosecution violations of POST standards by law enforcement officers. Create a Civil Rights Division within the Attorney General’s Office to provide legal counsel to the accountability board.

A Ban on Discrimination

Rod Chapel, President of the Missouri NAACP

“In recent years, state leaders have codified discrimination into law, stripped Missourians of their basic dignity, and perpetuated some of the worst sins of our past into the 21st Century. After years of racist policies coming out of Jefferson City, Auditor Galloway has offered a new way to promote equality and fairness so our children and grandchildren can flourish.”

— Rod Chapel, President of the Missouri NAACP

“Missouri will never succeed until everyone can live and work without fear of discrimination simply because of who they are. Our shared success depends on striving for equality in opportunity.”

— Auditor Nicole Galloway

Here’s how Nicole will take action:
  • Galloway will work with the legislature to introduce and get passed legislation that would put forth to voters an amendment to the Missouri Constitution to prohibit discrimination based on race, color, sex, age, disability, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, or national origin.
  • As Governor, Galloway will update executive branch policies to explicitly prohibit workplace discrimination throughout state government.
  • Galloway will fix the effect of 2017’s Senate Bill 43, which placed limits on damages victims of housing discrimination could win in the courts. This disastrous policy threatens Missouri’s share of federal HUD funding and resulted in the NAACP issuing a travel advisory for the state.

Investments in Missouri’s Black Communities

— Jermaine Reed, Former Kansas City Councilman and Trustee of Metropolitan Community College

“Building a better Missouri starts with fostering an economic environment that places every community in a position to shape its future. For Missouri to nurture the ambition of its residents, we must get serious about closing the skills gap and uplifting our homegrown small businesses. Fortunately, Nicole has a new way for Black Missourians that is equitable, inclusive, and emphasizes shared prosperity.”

— Jermaine Reed, Former Kansas City Councilman and Trustee of Metropolitan Community College

“For too long, economic policies have prioritized flashy developments and chasing out of state companies. We’re not economically empowering people and communities to build futures for their families where they live. We need an economic development strategy that addresses family needs and creates opportunities in communities that need them most.”

— Auditor Nicole Galloway

Here’s how Nicole will take action:
  • Ensure that 20% of the Department of Economic Development Small Business Grants, and other entrepreneurial investments go to minority-owned businesses. And to ensure that this is accomplished we will reorganize the Department of Economic Development to include a department of Minority Business that will administer these investments.
  • Expand the pre-kindergarten grant program, with targeted deployment into Black communities, working with existing providers to ensure that the roll-out of this expansion is done in a way that uplifts the communities that they serve and provide the youngest Missourians the head start they deserve.
  • Prioritize development of places and businesses that address communities needs, such as grocery stores, public transit, and community spaces.
  • End the practice of asking job applicants about their criminal history. Ban the box.

Healthcare: A Basic Human Right

Dr. Will Ross, Public Health Expert and Leading Physician in the St. Louis region

“The COVID-19 pandemic is just the latest sign of the dramatic and long-standing health inequities between white and Black Missourians. Black Missourians are more likely to have heart disease, diabetes, stroke and kidney disease — and have a much shorter life expectancy than white Missourians. With this agenda, Auditor Galloway is showing the moral and political leadership needed to end these devastating health disparities and ensure every Black Missourians can get affordable, quality health care. Auditor Galloway understands that racism is a public health crisis that demands an immediate and comprehensive response from our leaders.”

— Dr. Will Ross, Public Health Expert and Leading Physician in the St. Louis region

“This pandemic has impacted Black Missourians in a far more disproportionate way than in other states. That’s because Missouri hasn’t made healthcare a priority. Medicaid Expansion is the most important step we can take to make healthcare more accessible in a time when it is desperately needed. Governor Parson opposes it. I’ll implement it.”

— Auditor Nicole Galloway

Here’s how Nicole will take action:
  • Expand Medicaid to give working Missourians with an income level at or below 133% of the federal poverty level health insurance.
  • Work with local providers to open clinics in predominantly Black communities, and expand health care job training programs to ensure that the benefits of expanding Medicaid are more than providing insurance, but also creating jobs and expanding access to health care.
  • Create a regional agreement to pool together and use our greater bargaining power to negotiate for lower prescription drug costs for Missourians.
  • Use the savings from Medicaid Expansion to invest in Department of Mental Health programs so that our criminal justice system isn’t our front line plan for addressing mental health.

Our Vote. Our Future.

Don Calloway, Former Missouri State Representative and National Voter Protection Action Fund founder<br />

“Our state has a long history of intentional and pernicious voter suppression aimed at making it harder for Black Missourians to vote. By ending the notary requirement and allowing no-excuse absentee voting, a Galloway administration will end the barriers that block many Black Missourians from fully participating in our democracy. Auditor Galloway’s agenda is nonpartisan and noncontroversial, and it is exactly what we need to end Missouri’s long-standing history of intentional voter suppression and finally make voting safe, fair, and accessible.”

— Don Calloway, Former Missouri State Rep. and National Voter Protection Action Fund founder

“Change begins with civic participation. In Missouri, we don’t make it easy to vote under normal circumstances, let alone during an infectious disease pandemic. It’s voter suppression by design. Missouri needs everyone participating in our democracy, no-excuse absentee vote by mail, without a ballot notarization requirement, automatic voter registration, and widespread early voting.”

— Auditor Nicole Galloway

Here’s how Nicole will take action:
  • Eliminate the requirement that the voter attest to a specific excuse in order to vote absentee by mail. The majority of states allow any voter to vote absentee without stating a reason.
  • Eliminate the requirement that absentee voters get their ballot notarized. The notary requirement is a modern-day poll tax, requiring an additional step of the voter having to find a notary public. Missouri is one of just a small handful of states that continues to have this requirement, which is only in-place to discourage absentee voting.
  • Utilize federal funding provided to Missouri for its intended purpose: expanding voting options, such as early voting. Many states allow voters to cast their ballot in-advance at a time that it is convenient for them. Compressing voting into one single day disenfranchise working people or those that have unexpected emergencies.